KEIGHLEY filmmakers and producers of digital content are being offered mentoring by industry experts.

A new mentoring programme has been launched to identify and nurture emerging screen talent) district.

FilmMaker 25 will use lottery funds to give support to 25 people in the hope of creating a strong talent pool of exciting producers by 2025, the year Bradford hopes to win UK City of Culture status.

The programme will build on the district as a filmmaking hotbed, with recent projects in Keighley area including TV drama Peaky Blinders and movies like Swallows and Amazons.

Richard Shaw, director of Bradford2025 said an inclusive programme for th screen sector was vital to develop the "uniquely diverse" voices of the district.

He said: "We know that talent is everywhere in the Bradford district, but opportunity is not.

"A high-quality fast-track mentoring programme is an amazing opportunity and a real game changer for the diverse, talented people looking to forge a career in film, television, digital and the wider screen sector in the years up to 2025 and beyond."

Richard said the district had strong association with the screen sector and was designated the first UNESCO City of Film in 2009, a permanent title bestowing international recognition on the district for its rich film heritage.

He said 'Film literacy' is nurtured through festivals, educational programmes and related events, while numerous movies and TV series have been shot in the district and community engagement with film is encouraged across the whole of the district.

Cllr Sarah Ferriby, who holds the Healthy People And Places portfolio for the council, said the UNESCO City of Film title was about the local talent pool and how to mobilise young filmmakers and content makers.

She said: "We want to encourage the next generation to be able to create and produce work here, building successful careers within the screen industries.

"It’s vital Bradford Council works in partnership with funders and the sector to develop programmes like FilmMakers 25, which are supporting our creative workforce."

FilmMaker25 project is jointly funded by Bradford Council and Bradford2025 in association with Bradford UNESCO City of Film and ScreenSkills, the industry-led skills body for the UK’s screen industries, using National Lottery funds awarded by the British Film Institute (BFI) as part of the Future Film Skills programme.

Local mentoring experts Under The Moon will run the programme, led by media consultant Ruth Pitt, who also runs the Commissioning Mentor Network for Channel 4 and the Creative Cities Convention, a screen industry conference for producers and broadcasters working outside London.

Ruth said: "Through our work matching mentees with industry leaders we have learned that both parties gain a lot.

"Mentees get real insights into commercial content production and distribution, and mentors get a reality check from working with talented, diverse people who’ve got something fresh to say.

"Mentoring is without doubt the fastest way to bring about change in the screen industries."

With Channel 4 opening its national headquarters in Leeds, the BBC, ITV and Sky employing thousands of people across the North and dozens of independent digital content producers growing across the UK, it’s hoped the new Bradford-based FilmMakers 25 mentor network will help local producers get a bigger slice of the media cake.

Those with a demonstrable skill in digital screen production can find out more about the mentoring network by visiting or emailing

Approaches from diverse and under-represented groups are particularly welcomed, as are enquiries from potential mentors willing to share their expertise for the benefit of others.